Harry S. Truman photo

Radio Remarks Opening the Community Chest Campaign.

September 29, 1950

[Broadcast from the White House at 10 p.m.]

My fellow citizens:

Tonight we in the United States, and our friends in Canada, are starting the annual Community Chest campaigns.

The Community Chest is an example of one of the oldest and best traditions of our country--the tradition of citizens voluntarily banding together to help their neighbors.

The Community Chest gives each of us an opportunity to help his neighbor.

By giving to the Community Chest, we help the sick. The chest provides funds for many hospitals and home nursing services, and offer health organizations.

By giving to the Community Chest, we help young people. The chest provides funds for the Boy Scouts and the Girl Scouts, funds for summer camps and neighborhood recreation houses, and for many other young peoples organizations.

By giving to the Community Chest we help people with physical and mental handicaps; we help young mothers who must work for a living; we help older people who need assistance.

Our gifts to the Community Chest help all these people and many others for the chest includes most of the private organizations, in our towns and cities, that provide health and welfare services.

By giving to the Community Chest we fulfill the Biblical injunction to love thy neighbor, and that means help thy neighbor. But we do more than that. When we help our neighbors--young and old alike--we make them better able to be self-reliant fellow citizens. And that is good for all of us. It knits the community more closely together, and strengthens our democratic way of life.

This year the Community Chest needs your support more than ever, because the chest must meet emergency needs of the men and women in our Army, Navy, and Air Force.

During the next year we shall double the size of our Armed Forces. We shall need many new Community Chest activities to provide recreational facilities for tens of thousands of young men and women away from home for the first time. Every veteran remembers the fine work of the USO in this country and overseas, and knows how important this service is to young people far from their homes and families.

And every man who goes into the service of his country will be glad to have the assurance that the Red Feather agencies will be standing by, ready to help his family if illness or accidents strike while he is away from home.

We must not hesitate when our Community Chest calls upon us this year for additional funds to help meet these needs. In a very real sense, our contributions will be for the national defense.

Through your Red Feather campaign, I earnestly urge you to accept your responsibility to your fellow citizens--the young ones growing up and needing intelligent guidance, those struggling with problems they cannot meet alone, the lonely and the aged, the sick and the handicapped. Add to them the young men and women in our Armed Forces, and you know how important it is to give--and give enough for all the services united under the banner of the Red Feather.

Harry S. Truman, Radio Remarks Opening the Community Chest Campaign. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/230306

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